Hillside walk, 30 November 2015

The California brickellbush (Brickellia californica) is at its peak and the sawtoothed goldenbush (Hazardia squarrosa) continues it blooming. Apart from that, most of the current bloom appears to be a response to the summer rains. However, those rains are long gone and the hillsides are looking drier that I think I've ever seen them. Most years we have at least some good rain in October or November, of the order of an inch of rain; but not this year. I am even wondering whether some of the apparent out-of-season blooming occurring now is a response to the dry, where plants are perhaps attempting to sow seeds before it's too late. Really evident at present are the bush monkeyflower (Diplacus longiflorus) in multiple places on the west hillside and toyon (Heteromeles arbutifolia) in Canyon 2.

Generally the green that appeared following the summer rains is disappearing or has disappeared. For example, all of that new, green grass has died, without going to seed, except for some green and semi-green grass on the protected north-facing slopes of Canyon 5, Canyon 2, and a little of Canyon 3. A number of flowers are fading away, or have already gone. The dodder (Cuscuta sp.) has only a few blooms, with most now dried up. The four o'clock, which was completely gone last week, is represented this week by a single plant with two flowers, among the many hundreds or thousands of this species spread around the hillsides.

Rattlesnake weed

Cliff aster

California coffeeberry

California sagebrush


Wishbone bush

Black sage

Chaparral currant

Chaparral currant

Sawtoothed goldenbush

Scrub oak

Leafy California buckwheat




Douglas's nightshade

Southern honeysuckle

California brickellbush

Bush monkey flower




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